Apple has not made it easy, but it is already possible to install Linux on Macs with M1 chips

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In November 2020, Apple began its particular revolution with the M1 chips, but it did so with a clear disadvantage for users: could no longer install Windows or Linux on these computers natively.

That forced us to use solutions such as virtualization, but now we have a solution to that problem. The Asahi Linux project now allows you to install and use Linux natively on these Macs, and although it does so at the moment with some limitations, this achievement is remarkable.

At the moment Asahi Linux is for the brave

Those responsible for the Asahi Linux project they have been working for months in getting Linux to be installed and used on the M1 Macs. Hector Martin (@marcan42), its main developer, frequently published videos with their work days polishing Linux drivers and components so they could work on the Mac architecture.

That work of the whole team has finally paid off: this weekend Asahi Linux alpha version releasedthe development that allows you to modify the bootloader of Macs with the M1 chip and install an Arch Linux distribution —although different ones can theoretically be installed— already prepared to run natively on these computers.

The hardware support, yes, is not complete. We will not be able to use the DisplayPort or Thunderbolt ports of these computers, and the HDMI port does not work on MacBooks -nothing to connect them to an external monitor, it seems-.

One of the important limitations is in the no GPU acceleration, but even without that option the graphical interface moves smoothly thanks to the powerful M1. The installation process, by the way, is non-destructive: we will keep the macOS partition and we will be able to boot with Linux or with macOS during the computer startup.

So at the moment this is a very enthusiast-oriented (and brave) preview release, but this Linux support is surprising considering that Apple has not provided information or details that could help in this achievement.

Everything has been done almost “by hand”, and now it only remains to be seen how far Asahi Linux can go, a project that you can support thanks to its patreon campaign. At the moment something is clear: if you are a linux user and you like Mac M1you can now successfully combine both ingredients.

More information | AsahiLinux

In November 2020, Apple began its particular revolution with the M1 chips, but it did so with a clear disadvantage…

In November 2020, Apple began its particular revolution with the M1 chips, but it did so with a clear disadvantage…

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